Sunday, 27 February 2011

2 Projects

Project 1.
 A couple of weeks ago I gave you a little peek at my latest brooches. Well, I did a little more sewing last night and a few are well on there way...

Some are needle felted with beautiful hand spun wool and others are decorated with sari silk. I love working with the sari silk waste but it is a bit of a pain to sew as it unwinds really easily. I wrap the thread in coloured wire before stitching the spiral onto the felt flowers. It is very time consuming but they look stunning in the end.

I still have to sew beads onto this one's centre.

Project 2.
I have to thank Liz at That Fuzzy Feeling for the tutorial on her blog which I used for my next project. Liz makes the most beautiful needle felted bowls and I was inspired to have a go. Wow, it was hard work! I was so engrossed I forgot to take pics as I was going along, which is probably just as well as it was a mess! In the end I have something respectable, if a little wonky but fortunately felt is very forgiving.
The colours look much better in real life. The spiral is rose pink and actually goes really well with the baby pink and blue. I was inspired this morning by Koralee at Bluebird Notes. If you pop over to her blog you will see she loves these colours a LOT!
An upside down view - toadstool top?!
I'm not sure the outside is finished yet but I decided to quit while I was ahead. Huge respect to Liz, not sure I have the patience to tackle another one of these!
Becky x

Saturday, 26 February 2011

A New Find

Whilst shopping yesterday, I came across the launch issue of a new magazine called "Simply Homemade".
There is a little bit of everything in here; knitting, sewing, stencilling, card making, baking, furniture restoration, soap making... the list is endless.

There are 3 very lovely bags to be made and lots of ideas, templates, and a few free gifts too. I would definitely recommend this one. It has a lovely pattern for an adult and child's apron, typical after I've just bought a new one!

I did get that felt bowl finished last night. Hooray! A few nights ago I added some texture using some wool from my stash.

 So last night I wanted to add some colour. I liked the looseness of the style and wanted to continue that way but this does rub against the grain a little for me! I tried a couple of different things before settling on using this...

Colour with a bit of sparkle!

It worked beautifully against the dark felt of the bowl.

For my first attempt at a felt vessel I'm really pleased with the result and itching to try another one!
The sun has peeped out from behind the clouds this morning and I can see some blue sky so some fresh air will be had by all today! Hope you get some sun wherever you are. ; )
Becky x

Friday, 25 February 2011

Wet Week Activities

The weather has been quite miserable here in  Cornwall this week. Grey and wet - not Spring-like at all. My gardening plans have been put on hold and instead we have done all those irritating little jobs that we so often put off. Some of it quite tedious and boring, but some of it quite satisfying once finished.

When my husband and I got married, we were given a beautiful piece of glass art from my dad. It is very heavy and we knew special fixings were needed as it didn't have a frame. Anyway, now the hallway has had a fresh coat of paint, we knew it was time it was given a home and appreciated so...

I love the simplicity of the design. The dichroic glass really catches the light on the fish. It was really hard to photograph so apologies for the poor light, I should have waited for a sunny day (but goodness knows when the next one is going to be!).

I repaid my family's patience (see last post) with some home baking. Lulu's and I have been baking together since she was 2 years old and I am pleased to say it has become a little less messy and a lot more productive than it used to be! Tuesday we made chocolate chip cookies and fudge brownies - no pics, sorry, we ate them all too quickly! Yesterday we made ginger ferrings which I managed to snap a few shots of before they disappeared out of the door (quite literally as Lulu's likes to take some to our neighbours!).
These are the biscuits before they go in the oven. We make a 'fat' sausage and slice it up. You don't have to be very precise as they spread out in the oven...
 ...and here they are cooling. They are actually a bit darker than this but the flash on my camera has washed out the colour. I got this recipe from the National Trust tearooms that I worked in many moons ago. If you would like it I'm happy to share.
I have done a little more to my felt vessel but it still isn't finished, that's tonights job.
To finish this is my Little Mannie (nicknamed by Lulu when he was born - "Hello, Little Mannie", it was so sweet it just stuck!) trying desperately to wear his sister's party shoes! Bless!
I was trying to get a picture of his curls as his hair is getting quite long now and they will soon need to be trimmed. Sad day, they grow so fast.

That's me for now. I will endeavor to finish that bowl and post some pics soon. Enjoy your weekend.
Becky x

Monday, 21 February 2011

Books, fabric, gift boxes and a bowl.

It's been a busy day. I did get a little more retail therapy, but actually it was a little stressful. Firstly, it rained quite heavily. Secondly, I was really uninspired by everything in the fabric and wool shop I was so looking forward to going to. In fact, I felt quite frustrated. Why is it that when you are trying to be good and save money you find thousands of things you would just love. But when you plan to treat yourself there is absolutely nothing of interest anywhere.
Anyway, I went to Waterstones and, from a very disappointing selection of crochet books, came away with these two:
I bought these because I need to improve my technical skills as I really only know the basics. There are so many inspirational bloggers out there creating beautiful things for their homes that I feel inspired to push my creative boundaries and take on something a little more challenging. The only trouble was I couldn't find any yarn that I liked so I shall have to have a little play using my stash for now.
I wanted to make some fabric storage boxes from felt and line them with some fabric. Eventually I chose these but they weren't quite what I wanted.

Tonight I played with the lovely cardstock I bought on Saturday. I chose these patterns to go with some of my necklaces.

After a little sizzix magic the cards were transformed into...

I love making these boxes, but they are only big enough for my necklaces and I need to invest in something larger for my brooches. If you've got a good sizzix box die about 3" by 3" by 1" please let me know, I'm struggling to find anything.
My poor husband and children were stars today. They humoured me by nodding, smiling and frowning at almost all the right times, even when they were bored silly. I must bake them something nice tomorrow to say thank you.
Last night I played with my felt at the sink for a little while and then left my creation to dry on the radiator. You can have a little peek...

It is by no means finished and is my very first felt vessel. It reminds me of an algae covered pebble from my pond! This wasn't really the intention! However a few shots of needle felted colour and we may have some spring flowers... maybe! When it's finished I would like to make a tutorial for these, though it may take a little while.
OK, you, like my family, have been very patient to wade through my ramblings so I am going to call it a night!
Becky x

Sunday, 20 February 2011

Treat Yourself!

So, I'm officially off work for a week and that involves a bit of retail therapy, doesn't it? We have a local farmer's market in the village once a month which a few local craft's people attend. I picked up a jar of chilli jelly (which I am a little addicted to and seems to accompany my every meal!) and then spotted this...

I just love this print. 

It works so well with the spotty one too, but I would never have thought to put them together.
I asked the lady if she made children's aprons and she said she could, so next month I'm hoping to pick one up for Lulu, my little girl (not her real name but a nick name that sort of evolved due to the Bob the builder theme tune - it's a long story!).

Later, during a little wander around the Range looking for a clock for our newly decorated hallway, I found this...
a lovely little collection of papers. This is quite a heavy cardstock which I like to use to make gift boxes for the jewellery I sell on Folky. These are really quite beautiful with a touch of glitter (I am a primary school teacher!). I have a lovely gift box die to use with my sizzix machine and these papers will look just great (pics to follow when I've had a play).

Tomorrow more shopping, I want to make some fabric storage boxes for a new shelving unit so it's off to a fabric shop (or Mummy's sweet shop as Lulu's calls it). I feel the need for some new yarn and maybe a crochet book or two. Yes, I will definitely rename this half-term to 'treat yourself' week! x

Friday, 18 February 2011

Half-term! Hooray!!!

It's here, finally! A week off and the promise of a decent night's sleep, (hopefully accompanied by a lie-in), baking, gardening, felting and maybe some nice walks (if the rain stops - it's very heavy here tonight). Heaven!

This is a photograph I took of my orchid which is currently in full bloom. My late Nan loved orchids. They are so easy to keep and bloom for weeks. This one has a beautiful lacework effect on the petals.
I'm off to continue the brooches I started recently and perhaps start a new necklace.
Have a good weekend. x

Thursday, 17 February 2011

Has the post come yet?

I know you'll all agree with me, there's nothing quite like the anticipation of a parcel coming in the post! I spotted a super little felt bag made by Liz at That Fuzzy Feeling which she made while preparing for a craft fair. I fell in love with it when I first saw it and when it didn't sell at the fair, did a bit of cheeky asking if she would possibly list it on Folksy! Well, she did and yesterday my bag arrived!
It is so beautifully soft, the subtle hints of colour in the natural felt, the brooch and button so well matched. I just love it!
I really think this bag was destined to be mine!

It's not really a very practical bag for me; with the two little ones I need a much larger bag for all the 'stuff' I carry around (I am always prepared for any eventuality and yet still manage to go out with only one glove!). But this isn't going to be my everyday, carry all the family stuff around, bag. This is my bag, just for my little things, on those rare occasions when it's just me and I will so look forward to using it!

Tuesday, 15 February 2011

Trebah Gardens

We had a lovely Valentine walk on Sunday at the gardens. It was strangely quiet, the weather much more pleasant than forecast and I found many more signs of Spring. Just look...
drifts of cyclamen...

 daffodils just opening their nodding heads...

and even a few camellias ..., you see, Spring really is on the way.
This was a beautiful sweet smelling plant, sarcocca confusa I think.
This one looks like a rhododendron to me but they said it was a camellia. What do you think?
Here are some more pics of the garden...
These are still quite wintry scenes but we'll pop back later in the year and take some photos of the garden in all it's glory! x

Sunday, 13 February 2011

Craving Colour

On these grey dreary days I have noticed that many bloggers are desperately craving colour.
I too am experiencing this yearning. I think it's got more to do with the anticipation of Spring, and so I have brought a bit of Spring to me!
They're looking a little a bit weather beaten but they are my little patch of colour by my front door, there to greet me as I go out and come home. Such simple things to satisfy the soul.
I'm off now for a Valentine's meal and walk at a local garden. Hopefully will find more evidence of Spring coming there too!
Hope you have a nice Sunday.

Friday, 11 February 2011

Too tired to craft?

I have had such a busy week at school that, by the time I get home, do all the family things and then do more school things,  I'm just too tired to think about making anything. Some nights I struggle to keep my eyes open. Tonight I am battling with my fatigue.
I want to craft.
I will craft.
If I could just get off this sofa!
I'm going to try a stong latte and look for inspiration in my latest magazine.
Do you juggle a job, family and a craft hobby?
How do you do it?! (Any tips gratefully received!)
Not wanting to moan at my bloggy friends, I'll leave you with a photo of the felt brooch I have for sale in my Folksy shop. A cream felt flower with a silk sari waste centre with wire and seed beads. I love these colours, so rich against the pale felt.

Monday, 7 February 2011

The Next Project...

Before Christmas I made some lovely little flower brooches using felt I bought from bloomingfelt and some yarn made from recycled waste sari silk.

Disappointingly, they didn't sell very quickly on Folksy (I'm not sure the photos do them justice) so I took them into work where they disappeared very quickly! In fact, I have had several requests for more. So I have decided to make some in time for Mother's day. Me being me, I don't like doing the same thing twice (too many ideas, too little time!). I bought this gorgeous wool on a shopping trip to St.Ives last month and have been itching to make something with it.

So I thought I would use some with my brooches. I'll give you a little peek of how I'm doing...

Just a taster until I get one finished!

Saturday, 5 February 2011

Folksy Friday Feature

I am very proud to say that Helen at ooohyum chose to include one of my necklaces in her Folksy Friday selection! I love what I make but it's much nicer when someone else likes it too!

Like most crafters, I enjoy the process as much as the end product. This necklace is really sweet and if it hasn't sold by Valentines day then it's going to be mine!
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